photo wishlist_zps2544b6d7.png

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Book Review: The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

BOOK review
Started on: 5 January 2022
Finished on: 15 January 2022
Title: The House in the Cerulean Sea
Author: T.J. Klune
Publisher: Tor Books
Pages: 398 pages / 394 pages (e-book)
Year of Publication: 2020
Price: Rp 189,000 (

Rating: 4.5/5
"We should always make time for the things we like. If we don't, we might forget how to be happy."
Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At the age of forty, he works as a Case Worker at the Department in Charge of Magical Youth (DICOMY) and he oversees the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages. One day, Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management and he's given a highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six seemingly dangerous children reside—a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Not only the children, Linus also has to observe their caretaker, Arthur Parnassus—who will do anything to keep his wards safe. Linus must set aside his fears and slowly unravel the secrets behind this orphanage which will force him to make a huge decision in the end.
"It's the little things, I expect. Little treasures we find without knowing their origin. And they come when we least expect them. It's beautiful, when you think about it."
"They fear what they don't understand. And that fear turns to hate for reasons I'm sure even they can't begin to comprehend. And since they don't understand the children, since they fear them, they hate them. This can't be the first time you've heard of this. It happens everywhere."
The House in the Cerulean Sea has been on my to-read list since last year but I didn't get to read it, so I resolve to do so at the start of the new year. I was intrigued by this book because a lot of people raved about it and the average rating on Goodreads is pretty high. Therefore, I started reading with a really high expectation even though I have no idea what it's going to be about. After I'm finished, I have to agree with those who say that this book feels magical and heartwarming. Some parts of the story breaks my heart and other parts are able to make me smile or even laugh. I've never read a book written by T.J. Klune prior to this, so this book was a really good introduction to his writing style.
"Sometimes... our prejudices color our thoughts when we least expect them to. If we can recognize that, and learn from it, we can become better people."
"Because even the bravest of us can still be afraid sometimes, so long as we don't let our fear become all we know."
To be honest, I find it quite difficult to enjoy the story right from the beginning, but it gradually gets better when the main character—Linus Baker, arrived at the Marsyas Island where things became a lot more fascinating. Before his trip to the island, Linus led a very boring life working at the Department in Charge of Magical Youth (DICOMY)—which in a way kind of bored me as well 😅. However, it definitely gives a good contrast to his experience at the Marsyas Island where there's never a dull moment. I absolutely love how the author introduced the characters on Marsyas Island one by one, highlighting each of the children's unique personality and ability. It helps me remember all of the characters because there's quite a lot of them: the caretaker of the orphanage, Arthur Parnassus, assisted by a sprite named Zoe Chapelwhite, and the six children: Talia (a gnome), Theodore (a wyvern), Phee (a young sprite), Sal (a boy who shifts into a Pomeranian when frightened), Chauncey (an unidentified green blob), and Lucy (the Antichrist). As Linus get to know each one of them, my affection for these characters also grows deeper because they're all charming in their own way. One of the main theme of this book is about prejudice. It reminds me not to judge someone without giving them a chance to show who they truly are. I think it's a wonderful and important message delivered through a beautiful, heartfelt story.

Among those character, my absolute favorite will have to be Chauncey, a blob with an adorable dream of becoming a bellhop. He's very pure and kind; most of his dialogues always managed to make me smile. Sal is another character that I really love, because seeing his character development throughout the story is very endearing—how he started off as someone who's easily frightened and intimidated due to past events, but slowly he started opening up and allow himself to grow as a person. Linus also went through a huge character transformation after he stayed in Marsyas Island. It gave me a huge relieve when he finally break out of his shell and is able to stand his ground. And one of the most intriguing part of this book is the mystery behind Arthur's character. Hints that Linus discovered shows that there's something more to Arthur than meets the eye. Unfortunately, I personally think the revelation to this mystery is a bit underwhelming. Lastly, Lucy (short for Lucifer 🤣) is also another charming character because with his name and identity as Antichrist would make us assume a lot of things about him. In the end, I become more compassionate towards his character because of the internal struggle that Lucy has to go through.
"But we must pick and choose our fights. Just because someone else acts a certain way, doesn't mean we should respond in kind. It's what makes us different. It's what makes us good."
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my time reading this book; there are a lot of sweet, adorable moments that touched my heart and some funny moments that made me laugh. It's the kind of story that restores my faith in humanity and make me want to believe the best about other people. I guess setting my expectations too high at the start kind of ruin the reading experience for me; which is why as much as I adore this book, I am unable to give it a full 5-star rating. Nevertheless, I still consider this a great read and I will definitely want to read more books written by T.J. Klune in the future 😊.
"Life, Linus Baker knew, came down to what we made from it. It was about the choices, both big and small."

by.stefaniesugia♥ .

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...